Using focus groups to develop the curriculum for a palliative cancer care online educational programme for community pharmacists.


  • Safeera Y Hussainy Centre for Medicine Use and Safety, Department of Pharmacy Practice, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Monash University, 381 Royal Parade, Parkville, Victoria, 3052, Australia.
  • Jennifer L Marriott Department of Pharmacy Practice, Monash University, Australia.
  • Jill Beattie Department of Pharmacy Practice, Monash University, Australia
  • Michael J Dooley Department of Pharmacy Practice, Monash University, Australia and Bayside Health, Victoria, Australia.
  • Roger L Nation Department of Pharmacy Practice, Monash University, Australia


Community pharmacists, cancer, education, focus groups, Nominal Group Technique, palliative care


Aim: To develop a curriculum for a flexible/online palliative cancer care educational programme for Australian community pharmacists using expert stakeholders.Method: Focus groups with pharmacists (n=7), doctors (n= 6) and nurses (n=12) were conducted utilising the Nominal Group Technique.Participants considered a draft of the programme, listing other modules that needed to be included, and three key messages for each module.Results:The results of each focus group were amalgamated, resulting in a list of 22 modules with multiple key messages. These findings were combined with those from a literature review and pharmacist survey, to arrive at the final programme structure which comprised 11 modules, each containing three to seven key messages.Conclusion: The focus groups validated, enhanced and refined the findings from the literature review and survey.


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